Culambia calls itself home to several groups of people.
The halflings live in the northeast corner of the Solutrian Empire. Although they were nominally conquered by the empire over 300 years ago, their pastoral lifestyle remains little changed from their ancestors’ days. Hardworking, but typically lacking ambition, the halflings are stalwart champions of the status quo. As long as there’s good beef, good bread, and good beer, a halfling is satisfied.
The Orcs of western Solutria have always lived in small bands based on kinship. An orc owes loyalty to their clan, and typically acts of bravery or sacrifice are done for the betterment of the clan, in the name of the clan. These clans are led by the eldest female, as orcs believe that only women are capable of responsibly holding political power. While not actually less intelligent than the other races of Culambia, orcs have a justly earned reputation for solving problems with violence rather than negotiation. They are bitter enemies with the mountain dwarves, with whom they have fought for centuries in order to establish dominance over the mountains where they live.
The Velder of southern Solutria have herded their sheep and goats on the plateau for millennia. Highly individualistic, a traditional Velder thinks first of his family and his herds, and only second for his neighbors. Large and typically heavily muscled, the Velder have formed the backbone of Solutria’s army, even if they rarely rose to command ranks. Quick to both anger and laughter, a Velder usually makes a terrible enemy and a valuable friend.
The Riparians of the Argo Valley in central Solutria are the cultural elite of the Empire. It is their ancient city that forms its capital, and it is their language that dominates commerce among its many peoples. Smaller and darker complexioned than their southern cousins, the Riparians have turned the rivers of Culambia into their irrigation ditches and highways, building an empire on corn, commerce, and conquest
The Mountain Dwarves of Dammhut are a hardy and martial people, as befits a people scraping a living out of the rugged mountains that they share with their enemies, the orcs. Long-lived, they possess prodigious memories and a corresponding ability to nurse a grudge for decades, if not centuries. They honor tradition and their ancestors, and dwarven society is based on a complex, interlocking set of honor-bound obligations. Outsiders often view some of these obligations as akin to slavery, but the Mountain Dwarves would disagree, even if they cannot explain precisely how it differs from bondage. The Mountain Dwarves take these oaths extremely seriously, and since they form the basis for nearly all social interactions, they have earned a reputation for being dour and unhumorous.
The culture of the Hill Dwarves is almost completely a reaction against the perceived shortcomings of their mountain dwelling cousins, and they are much freer, open, and fun-loving as a result.. Oaths and bonds are forbidden among them, and they owe no loyalty to an unaccountable king. They are fiercely proud of their status as the only democratically-ruled people on the continent, and tend to look down on other societies that have not yet learned the virtues of republicanism. The past is of little importance to them, and they are quick to accept new ideas, especially regarding exciting technologies. They are Culambia’s consummate tinkers and inventors, although insatiable curiosity has spelled the end for more than one Hill Dwarf.
The sea elves of Shand’o Thelas crave adventure almost as much as they crave gold. Sailing the Shand’o sea, elven captains are kings and queens unto themselves, commanding the loyalty of their crew with the profits they earn by trade. Superficially gregarious, the sea elves are deeply secretive, especially when it comes to money making opportunities.
Little is known of the high elves of Shazad, other than that they still dwell in their ancient cities, even as the encroaching desert wears them down. Still less is known of their southern cousins, the wood elves who dwell in Jataan. No one has ever returned from those forests alive.